166: Beat Your Game to Death

Beat Your Game to Death

"What's on display here is the bad blood between two game series, Ninja Gaiden and Capcom's Devil May Cry. Sonia is a mockery of Dante, hero of Devil May Cry, a white-blonde, blue-eyed guy with a prominent Greek nose and a propensity for leather. He wields a pair of .45 autos called Ebony and Ivory. The placement of Itagaki's name on the shot of Ryu standing over a helpless parody of Dante sends a message: Ninja Gaiden, not Devil May Cry, stands at the crest of Hardcore Hill.

"But who gets that joke? Who cares about such archaic, macho grandstanding? Who is Itagaki's message really for? The answer is: the worst possible videogame customer."

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Meh. The only difference between a hardcore gamer and any other kind of geek is that what's happening on the screen in front of him looks a little more interesting than whatever the other geeks are doing. I prefer to have a life.

The only real knitpick I have with this is that Dante, nay, no-one in the Sparda bloodline (Sparda is Dante's father, Vergil is Dante's Twin, Nero is... they never actually explain that. A cousin, I guess) has anything but SILVER-WHITE hair (or simmilar). Or, rather, in DMC, DMC2, and DMC4, Dante has GRAY hair, and in 3, he has WHITE hair. In 4, Nero has WHITE hair. When you see Sparda in human form, he has WHITE hair. Vergil has WHITE hair.

THEY DO NO HAVE WHITE-BLONDE HAIR! THEIR IS NO BLOND IN THEIR HAIR.

THEY HAVE WHITE HAIR, AND THAT WHICH IS SIMMILAR (Gray and Silver-White)!

Sorry 'bout that, but stuff like that bothers me. I'm a knitpicker.

A very good read about two of my favorite games, I would be one of those mentioned 'hardcore' gamers that get their jollys from the harder difficulties. But I don't know how anybody got that joke at the start of Ninja Gaiden, I was just waiting for my guns all the way through (Damn developers tricking me with their jokes). Definitely five minutes of my life I don't want back.

Whatever. God of War III is still gonna kick both their arses.

DMC 3 is the only game I played that was true hardcore because you always look cool no matter the difficulty setting. Memorizing enemy placement and special moves is not hardcore. Struggling to survive is hardcore. Pulling shit out of your ass to win in the clutch is hardcore. Only a few games pull this off (DMC 3, Shinobi, Blood Will Tell, Onimusha 3, Dead to Rights, Max Payne, Enter the Matrix, Star Wars Jedi Outcast and Academy, Resident Evil 4)

Beating Ninja Gaiden is like surviving a car crash or a complex surgery. Everyone is just happy you made it out alive because the game is so unfortunate and joyless. Ryu does the same moves over and over again against cheap enemies with overpowered attacks. And you can't save your game. That's not hardcore. Ninja Gaiden is just sadistic. A player has to enjoy pain in order to like it.

R.O.:
DMC 3 is the only game I played that was true hardcore because you always look cool no matter the difficulty setting. Memorizing enemy placement and special moves is not hardcore. Struggling to survive is hardcore. Pulling shit out of your ass to win in the clutch is hardcore. Only a few games pull this off (DMC 3, Shinobi, Blood Will Tell, Onimusha 3, Dead to Rights, Max Payne, Enter the Matrix, Star Wars Jedi Outcast and Academy, Resident Evil 4)

Beating Ninja Gaiden is like surviving a car crash or a complex surgery. Everyone is just happy you made it out alive because the game is so unfortunate and joyless. Ryu does the same moves over and over again against cheap enemies with overpowered attacks. And you can't save your game. That's not hardcore. Ninja Gaiden is just sadistic. A player has to enjoy pain in order to like it.

My thoughts exactly.

I usually suck way too bad to play a game on the hardest setting..

but when my xbox gets fixed (damn RRoD), I'll try TFU on its hardest setting, just to see if it's fun getting my ass handed to me over and over

Interesting aside: some genres have even begun to give up on the idea of tough opposition. Soul Calibur IV seems to have finally accepted that writing AI for a fighting game is too difficult and sets up its hard challenges by making you fight multiple opponents (often with weird superpowers). This theory can be proven by going into Training mode where there are difficulty levels (!). Switch to Master difficulty and, sure enough, the AI can do very reliable GIs and throw reversals but still has no grasp of strategy and dies to the same things every time.

Interesting. I have mixed feelings about this article. I agree with the author on many points, but I don`t think calling hardcore gamers (or products oriented toward them) is fair.
Let`s not forget that before games were labeled as hardcore or casual games, there were two types of players playing the same game. The player that was good, and the one that sucked.
Was Mario Bros. a hardcore game? Nah. A casual game? Nah. It was a video game.

You can't be angry at olympics champions for winning the gold medal no more than you accuse them of having no life. Hardcore gamers are good at games, that's what they do. Casual gamers are not so good at games, either because they can't, or don't care.
The hardcore gamer has the competitive spirit. The patience and will to strive to be the best. To overcome any challenge that the game can throw at him or her.

I personally enjoy to obliterate a game. Not just finish it at the hardest difficulty, I want to finish it without losing 1 hp, and using only the most basic weapon. In a RPG for instance, I'll grind until I get a 9 in every slot available. If my HP can fit in 10 slots, then my HP will have to be 9 999 999 999 in order for me to stop playing.
You just get the most out of your game and you get to see everything in it.
Yes I have finished resident evil 4 on hard using only the knife except when it's mandatory not to and completed it with 100% accuracy and 0 death and I have beaten God Hand over 30 times just so I would get to truly discover what ALL the moves could really do.

BUT, I have bought more games alone than any 10 casual gamers together. How does that make me really bad for the game industry?
Why are there more games for casual gamers than for hardocre gamers? Am I not the type of player that the video game industry was feeding on for years before getting to what it is now?
It feels like they took my money and invested it in making games for them.
And then they say I have no life just because I'm good.
I did't choose to swim really fast, I just chose to play very well.

It seems that the boys at Valve and various game developers for the 360 are starting to catch on to this ability to foster obsession, in part. With achievements, it's easy to make a player jump through any sort of hoop you set up for them. You can add an in-game reward and marvel as the most casual of players will break a sweat pushing their limits to get an upgrade that they don't really need after all of the experience gained from earning it.Not to mention the gamerscore addicts, who will play a game they'd otherwise not touch because it has easy-to-earn achievements.

I only noticed this myself when I was playing Dead Rising for the 360. About an hour in to driving around the maintenance tunnels running over zombies incessantly, I realized that I had been doing nothing but running over zombies for an hour. Like everyone, I was doing this for the Zombie Genocider achievement, which gives you a real megabuster from the popular Megaman series. I was already level 50, and could one-shot most foes with my bare hands. But I really wanted that weapon, and more importantly, the bragging rights.

Just recently, I completed a run in which I earned the Saint achievement, in which my greatest foe was not the swarms of undead or killer psychopaths, but the rather silly survivor AI that caused them to occasionally run to the nearest horde and ask for a group hug. Doing this run brought me face-to-face with some of the flaws of one of my favorite games, but the challenge just made me enjoy it more and more. I think the best part is that I'm not even sure what earning that achievement unlocked for me in-game.

Oi vey! I prefer games that are fun to ones that are hardcore.

Any game that requires precognition to play is fundamentally flawed as far as I'm concerned. If you know where every enemy is because you've memorized it from previous attempts, that's as much cheating as seeing through the walls. That fact that some games are made so such is necessary is deeply problematic for me. If the game put out slightly randomized levels so that one had to sneak around and establish guard routines before making one's assault, that would be fine, because it would depend more on skill than on deeply out-of-character future knowledge, and would also better fit the atmosphere. There would be real doubt and tension. What is going on and how am I going to do this?

i knew tecmo would eventually do something like this, ninja gaidan 2 is still a great game

Yikes! Seems the term 'hardcore gamer' is lost on this generation to mean something entirely different than what it was back in the day. When it described someone obsessed with the hobby entirely rather than a single game.

/sigh You kids.

I can see the futility of spending months on end trying to perfect your abilities at a certain game. However, some people just enjoy this kind of thing and there's nothing wrong with that. I played Ninja Gaiden and Devil May Cry 4, I really suck at both. But if you want to be the best at something and are willing to put the time and effort in to do so, then go for it.

I just really hope that the author's compaint isn't another rant that hardcore games should be nixed in favor of more Wii Sports nonsense.

Mstrswrd:
Or, rather, in DMC, DMC2, and DMC4, Dante has GRAY hair, and in 3, he has WHITE hair. In 4, Nero has WHITE hair. When you see Sparda in human form, he has WHITE hair. Vergil has WHITE hair.

Consider this, Nero, Vergil and Dante are all half-blooded demons.
The order of the games are in it's timeline is as follows
Devil May Cry 3 Introduces Dante, Lady, and Vergil
Devil May Cry 1 Introduces Trish and Neo-Angelo (Vergil)
Devil May Cry 4 Introduces Nero, has Dante and his two fem-fetalles with him (Lady and Trish)
Devil May Cry 2 Introduces Lucia

Now, if you notice, there is more than just the color of his hair that is different. In 3,1 and 4 Dante is still the cocky smug bugger we love, yet at 4, its toned down somewhat (though that could be from the reduced playtime as him). 2's version though, shows a more adult and mature version, someone who has great control over his demon self (as evident by the ability for him to augment its capabilities through gems). Its feasible to say that yes, while everyone's hair is Sephiroth White (if thats a color) at the beginning, we see no one but Dante after 4's events. And its unclear how many years passed between 4 and 2. Considering he is part human, I'm sure he's a little more affected by aging, which is a good reason for both the darker hair and the shift in attitude.

Now to get back to topic. Nice read, though I'll admit I never noticed the correlation between Dante and the chick, despite that I've played both games. I'm not exactly hardcore though, so maybe that is why.

As for Ninja Gaiden, you didn't have to be masochistic to enjoy it, you WERE masochistic though, if you took the wooden sword through every useless upgrade of 8 stars to get it's alleged uber form, which honestly, sucked many certain parts of the male genitalia.

cursedseishi:

Mstrswrd:
Or, rather, in DMC, DMC2, and DMC4, Dante has GRAY hair, and in 3, he has WHITE hair. In 4, Nero has WHITE hair. When you see Sparda in human form, he has WHITE hair. Vergil has WHITE hair.

Consider this, Nero, Vergil and Dante are all half-blooded demons.
The order of the games are in it's timeline is as follows
Devil May Cry 3 Introduces Dante, Lady, and Vergil
Devil May Cry 1 Introduces Trish and Neo-Angelo (Vergil)
Devil May Cry 4 Introduces Nero, has Dante and his two fem-fetalles with him (Lady and Trish)
Devil May Cry 2 Introduces Lucia

Now, if you notice, there is more than just the color of his hair that is different. In 3,1 and 4 Dante is still the cocky smug bugger we love, yet at 4, its toned down somewhat (though that could be from the reduced playtime as him). 2's version though, shows a more adult and mature version, someone who has great control over his demon self (as evident by the ability for him to augment its capabilities through gems). Its feasible to say that yes, while everyone's hair is Sephiroth White (if thats a color) at the beginning, we see no one but Dante after 4's events. And its unclear how many years passed between 4 and 2. Considering he is part human, I'm sure he's a little more affected by aging, which is a good reason for both the darker hair and the shift in attitude.

... I know. I'm a huge DMC fan. Even got the light novels and Manga, and the anime the days it came out, even though I couldn't understand a damn word. I also know about the whole hair and age thing. I was just pointing out that his hair is never, in any way, a color that isn't derivative of white or grey. Or any of the Sparda's, for that matter.

Sorry if I came of as rude in anyu way shape or form.

Ahh its no problem, I'm a fan of the series as well.
I just re-read the first little bit of the article and noticed that he said white-blond which is where your post came from. I'm used to people calling it white-blond, or blondish white, or such, so I learned to phase those words out and replace them with white/silver/whatever lol

And I'll admit I was not completely there when I typed that, no caffiene all day is a bad baaad thing for me lol

Guys, do a google image search on "white-blonde", and you'll find a range of hair colours that includes all of the ones you've mentioned, plus some yellower shades.

Yes; "white-blonde" covers silver, grey, white, and very light blonde hair. It's the best shorthand for covering all of the colours that Dante's locks have had.

On the other hand, I do appreciate the pedantry here. It's exactly the sort of thing I was praising in the piece. In this spirit, then, I'll point out that it's picking 'nits'--no 'k'.

R.O.:
DMC 3 is the only game I played that was true hardcore because you always look cool no matter the difficulty setting. Memorizing enemy placement and special moves is not hardcore. Struggling to survive is hardcore. Pulling shit out of your ass to win in the clutch is hardcore. Only a few games pull this off (DMC 3, Shinobi, Blood Will Tell, Onimusha 3, Dead to Rights, Max Payne, Enter the Matrix, Star Wars Jedi Outcast and Academy, Resident Evil 4)

Beating Ninja Gaiden is like surviving a car crash or a complex surgery. Everyone is just happy you made it out alive because the game is so unfortunate and joyless. Ryu does the same moves over and over again against cheap enemies with overpowered attacks. And you can't save your game. That's not hardcore. Ninja Gaiden is just sadistic. A player has to enjoy pain in order to like it.

not quite. I have played both DMC 3-4 and Ninja Gaiden one and two and they really aren't THAT hard. Granted that they will still beat the living tar out of people who are new to the genre it's still a fun game to play. I have beaten DMC 3,4 and NG. I have not beaten the second one but playing it doesn't mean I like pain. I just like being a ninja.

Oh and I have been through a complex, dangerous and life saving surgery. Ninja Gaiden/ Devil may Cry is alot less painful

wait a minute, did this article get re-published? I coulda sworn I've read this before.

ElArabDeMagnifico:
wait a minute, did this article get re-published? I coulda sworn I've read this before.

This is the "Best Of" issue.

Hardcore gamers buy less games than casual gamers do they? Wrong. The average hardcore gamer will have at least 100 games and the average casual gamer will have at most a dozen.
The truth is that these days there are far fewer hardcore gamers (proportionally) and importantly they are cynical and hard nosed, they're not going to swallow shit from publishers, they know a good game and they know what they want.

I think the author here is confused about the terms "hardcore gamer" and "casual gamer", the only real difference is the amount and quality of games consumed, rather than the way games are played as the author suggests. Obsessive play isn't the preserve of the hardcore gamer, in fact many casual games are built around the idea of obsessive play. The difference is that hardcore gamers play games with depth that are worth sinking hundreds of hours into.
Of course i'm referring to PC gamers here who are a different breed to console gamers, there may well be a qualitative difference in casual and hardcore gamers between the console and the PC.

Unfortunately it is true however that the sector is split, with developers and hardcore gamers on one side and casuals and soulless publishers/money-men on the other. Even more unfortunately the casuals and money-men hold all the cards, i.e. the casuals have the strength of numbers and a money-men have power over the developers.

The lowest common denominator shits the bed again... sigh.

 

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